America is one of the world’s greatest military and economic powers; therefore, it is vital to understand the nation’s political direction. Political life in the United States is characterized by colorful elections, genuine federalism, an independent national legislature, a strong judiciary, and several other distinguishing elements. When the correct and capable leaders are elected, the citizens’ most significant responsibility is to make sure that they are making the best choices possible for their country’s progress. Americans have a critical role in deciding how the country’s political orientation is set through its Congress, media, political parties, the executive branch, and judicial system.
Political views include any thoughts or attitudes that some adult citizens hold. When a sizable section of the population seems to have the same opinion on a topic, it depicts the entire population’s minds. Education, family, political events, and the media are significant determinants of people’s views. “Clearly, the media—newspapers, television, radio, and Internet sources—strongly influence public opinion. It is because the media inform the public about the issues and events of our times and thus have an agenda-setting effect” (Schmidt et al. 121). Political parties significantly influence the politics of a nation through their decisions. Young people must join political parties to control how the country’s politics are shaped. Political parties support the democratic process in America by assisting with candidate recruitment and election administration. Minor parties have difficulty winning elections in the USA since there have only been two major political parties for a very long period.
The media is very significant in American politics. It entertains people, highlights public concerns, serves as a political platform, and socializes the next generation. During campaigns, the political effect of media is most visible. ‘Traditionally, newspapers and other media have tried to separate opinion pieces from “straight news”‘ (Schmidt et al. 141). During the campaigns, certain major media outlets have been accused of bias. When the media creates division in a previously peaceful community that might result in conflict, media should aim at spreading friendly and non-biased information within the society. Even though opinion polls are hampered by issues such as sample mistakes, they may provide the government with information on the public’s attitudes about a specific topic that affects the country.
Because the interest groups have shared goals, they may influence the public to affect the political structure of the government. They may employ direct or indirect ways to impact the operations of the government. Direct tactics include speaking before legislative bodies, whereas indirect means include organizing public opinion campaigns. “More interest groups are formed to represent economic interests than any other set of interests. The variety of economic interest groups mirrors the complexity of the American economy” (Schmidt et al. 149). Interest groups may be detrimental to American politics since they are solely concerned with making choices that benefit them rather than all people. They may interfere with the citizen’s ability to make the right choices about leadership. The interest groups may fund the politician who may be unsuitable for the general population.
The current political culture allows Americans to assess the performance of their government. Interest groups are the primary providers of campaign financing, demonstrating their importance in American politics. “The key to success for interest groups is access to legislators and executive branch officials” (Schmidt et al. 153). Election rules have been altered to allow anybody who meets certain requirements, such as registration, age, citizenship, and domicile, to vote. As a citizen, it is critical to participate in the voting, campaigning, and election processes to guarantee that the most exemplary leaders are elected. Initially, only white property owners were able to vote. “The United States uses the Australian ballot—a secret ballot that is prepared, distributed, and counted by government officials at public expense” (Schmidt et al. 189). Involvement should begin at home by persuading family members to vote for a particular candidate. Progress may be achieved by urging the general public to vote for the most outstanding leaders. The common predictors of voting trends include party affiliation and race.
Congress significantly affects legislation, public education, oversight, dispute resolution, and people representation. “Congress is the highest elected body in the country, charged with making binding rules for all Americans” (Schmidt et al. 201). They also have the constitutional power to levy taxes on individuals, regulate business, and declare war; therefore, they control many government actions. Citizens must be active in selecting the greatest leaders to ensure they get the representation they deserve. When excellent leaders are appointed, political choices will be made that are fair to people. The US Congress makes laws that impact people’s lives through legislative debate. “In recent years, Congress has appeared to be deeply split, highly partisan in its conduct, and not very responsive to public needs” (Schmidt et al. 199). Congress’s power to declare war may interfere with the nation’s security. The leaders may declare unnecessary wars for their gains and benefit and therefore compromise the safety of the entire citizens. The corruption benefits may make the leaders make decisions aimed to favor them at the expense of the people of America.
The President’s office performs official and informal functions, such as commander in chief, chief lawmaker, politician, and leading diplomat. “The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America” (Schmidt et al. 229). As a result, the President has considerable authority in molding the nation’s political, executive, and legislative duties. The President makes the final decision, negotiates treaties, and signs legislation. Because the President makes essential choices that impact all residents, American citizens must have a part in ensuring that the appropriate President is chosen. President has a massive role in determining the nation’s economic stability through his financial decisions. He also determines the country’s security as he is the chief commander of military forces. Therefore, when the USA faces some problems because of the President they elected, they have a part being blamed. I believe that most Americans think it is risky to give the President so many powers. It may make the President interfere with the fair administration of justice to his people. The investigations into a particular matter of public interest may be impeded by the excess power held by the nation’s leader.
The President has the authority to appoint federal judges and may utilize this authority to make favorable choices. They may hold the post for life if nominated and do not commit misbehavior. “The opinion contains the Court’s ruling on the issue or issues presented, the reasons for its decision, the rules of law that apply, and other information. (Schmidt et al. 281). Judges become legislators by implementing and interpreting the law. One of the significant flaws in America’s judicial system is the zero accountability system of law enforcement members. The American police and prosecutors exercise extraordinary powers over other individuals’ lives, which may lead to the violation of the rights of minority groups. For example, I think if the murder of George Floyd had happened without any viral video portraying the incident, the police officers would not have been held responsible for the murder. They would end up denying that they have no association with the murder. Therefore, this may imply that the American justice system could be rotten as not all people have equal access to justice. Discriminatory practices such as racism could affect people’s access to justice in the USA.
In conclusion, there are many different types of political views held by American citizens. In American politics, the role of the media is critical. It entertains, raises awareness of public issues, serves as a platform for political discourse, and educates the next generation. Candidate recruitment and election administration are two ways political parties help the democratic process in the United States. To demonstrate their importance in American politics, interest groups provide the most funding for campaigns. Legislation, dispute resolution, public education, oversight, and constituent representation benefit significantly from the work of Congress. The President’s office performs official and informal functions, such as commander in chief, politician, chief lawmaker, and leading diplomat. The President has the authority to appoint federal judges and may utilize this authority to make favorable choices. Citizens must remember their role in electing the best leaders who will serve to promote public interest and not self-interest.
Schmidt, Steffen W., et al. American Government and Politics Today. Cengage, 2019.